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The university of the imagination

OCAD U is the largest and most comprehensive art, design and media university in Canada.

Photo of the Sharp Centre for Design taken shortly after the new building opened in late 2004. Photo by Richard Johnson.

About OCAD University

OCAD U is Canada’s university of the imagination

Founded in 1876, OCAD U is dedicated to art and design education, practice and research and to knowledge and invention across a wide range of disciplines. OCAD U continuously builds on its traditional, studio-based strengths, adding new approaches to learning that champion cross-disciplinary practice, collaboration and the integration of emerging technologies. In the Age of Imagination, members of the OCAD U community are uniquely qualified to act as catalysts for the next advances in culture, technology and quality of life for all Canadians.

Our programs and research bridge fields of digital media and design, sustainability, health and wellness, cultural diversity and indigenous cultures.

Our students engage in creative studio-based, aesthetic and technical learning, together with critical, theoretical, scientific and historical knowledge and methods.

Finally, our location inspires. OCAD U is situated at the heart of the nation's art, design, business and new media capital, on the ancestral and traditional territories of the Mississaugas of the New Credit, the Haudenosaunee, the Anishnabe and the Huron-Wendat — the original owners and custodians of the land on which we stand.

Read our strategic plan

Our namesake

1876: Ontario School of Art
1886: Toronto Art School
1890: Central Ontario School of Art and Industrial Design
1912: Ontario College of Art
1996: Ontario College of Art & Design (OCAD)
2010: The Ontario College of Art and Design University (OCAD U)

OCAD University is located in the heart of Toronto, beside the Art Gallery of Ontario and the historic Grange Park. Its growing south campus is five minutes away in the city’s thriving Arts and Entertainment District.

Sharp Centre for Design